What is Ptosis?
Ptosis, also called blepharoptosis, is when the upper eye lid of one or both eyes droops. The condition can be so severe that it blocks part of the eye, restricting normal vision. It is often caused by age, trauma, or a medical condition. It can occasionally be indicative of a stroke or brain tumor, especially if it affects both eyelids. Sometimes tendons can be stretched during cataract or Lasik surgery, causing ptosis.
What you can expect at the Robert Cizik Eye Clinic
The Cizik Eye Clinic opened in 2007 and is housed in Memorial Hermann Plaza at 6400 Fannin Street. It includes dozens of exam areas, multiple operating rooms, and laser suites equipped with the most sophisticated equipment available for patient care.
People travel from across the country and the world for treatment at the Cizik Eye Clinic, in part because our affiliation with McGovern Medical School at UTHealth provides unmatched resources and expertise. Our friendly staff works diligently to make your visit pleasant and efficient, as we maximize patient flow through everything from routine eye exams to the most advanced eye surgeries.
Our physicians are faculty members at McGovern Medical School at UTHealth and are board certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology or are board eligible. At the Cizik Eye Clinic, we understand that the eye is a small part of a whole patient who deserves top-notch, comprehensive care in a cutting-edge facility.
Causes of Ptosis
Children can be born with congenital ptosis when there is an issue with their levator muscle, which lifts the eyelid. If a child’s droopy eyelid blocks vision, amblyopia, frequently called “lazy eye,” can develop. The vision of a child with ptosis should be closely monitored.
Aging or injury can stretch the levator muscle in adults. Ptosis can also be a side effect of some eye surgeries, including cataracts surgery. In some cases, a serious condition, including a stroke or tumor, could be causing the condition. A nerve disorder, such as myasthenia gravis, might also be the source.
Symptoms of Ptosis
In some cases, ptosis does not impact vision, and your doctor may recommend monitoring the condition. Other times, it can cause blurry or blocked vision. It can also cause either dry or watery eyes. Some patients might find themselves arching their eyebrows, tilting their head back, or lifting their chin to see better. It can cause pain and make a person appear tired.
Diagnosis of Ptosis
Your ophthalmologist will discuss your symptoms, conduct a full physical exam, gather your medical history, and determine the appropriate diagnostic tests. That may include a sit lamp exam, where a drug is injected into your veins to see if it helps improve muscle strength in the eyelids. Eye movement tests provide significant information about vision. They can be conducted with a variety of computer technology and other devices, depending on a patient’s age and condition.
Treatment of Ptosis
A medicated eyedrop, called oxymetaxoline, may be prescribed in some cases to help the muscle that raises the eyelid. When used daily, some patients’ eyelids may open wider. Glasses with a special crutch to lift eyelids might also be prescribed to avoid surgery.
In many cases, ptosis surgery will be performed to tighten the levator muscle and lift the eyelid to the appropriate position. During the procedure, the doctor may remove extra skin, tuck the muscle, strengthen the muscle, or attach the eyelid to a different muscle. Surgery to correct the condition is usually an outpatient procedure performed under local anesthesia.
After surgery, your doctor will explain how to care for your eye and make a full recovery. Your vision will be monitored closely.
At Robert Cizik Eye Clinic, we offer patients access to highly specialized eye and vision care. To ask us a question, schedule an appointment, or learn more about us, please call (713) 486-9400, or click below to send us a message. In the event of an emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest Emergency Room.